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Voting in the Democratic presidential primary is about to kick off today with the Iowa caucuses. Live election results start at 8 p.m. ET, lasting roughly an hour.

For the first time ever, the Iowa caucuses are taking place in D.C. too. Meaning, Iowa voters will get to participate through “satellite caucuses” at the IBEW International Union on 7th Street NW and elsewhere in the D.C. region. 

“The satellite caucuses are part of the Iowa Democratic Party’s efforts to expand access to out-of-state voters,” writes WAMUJenny Gathright. “The state party had previously pitched a ‘virtual’ program that would allow voters to caucus via phone or video chat, but the Democratic National Committee rejected it, citing cyber security concerns.”

Just a few states outside of Iowa have satellite caucuses. According to Gathright, D.C. gets to participate thanks in part to Georgetown University’s Josh Mauss who applied on the city’s behalf. He estimates the total number of D.C. residents eligible to participate is 70.  

Why do we care about the Iowa caucuses? Especially if the state is a lot smaller and a lot whiter than the rest of the country? A smart take, IMHO: “Iowa became super important because we—the media, party insiders, activists, the candidates themselves, and even voters to an extent—gradually decided to make it so important,” writes Vox’s Andrew Prokop

Note: One of the biggest champions of D.C. statehood is this woman from Iowa.

Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? Email agomez@washingtoncitypaper.com)  

CITY DESK LINKS, byAmanda Michelle Gomez:

  • D.C. Jail was on lockdown for a week so staff could conduct searches for contraband. [WCP

  • Three residents test negative for coronavirus, while one test is still pending. [DCist]

  • D.C.’s rainy day fund is full. [WAMU]

LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals (tips? mryals@washingtoncitypaper.com

  • Jack Evans will use D.C.’s new public campaign financing to run for his old seat. Evans previously opposed using public money for political campaigns. [WAMU, Twitter]

  • In 2014, At-Large Councilmember Robert White said all campaigns should be funded with public money. Now he’s opting not to use it. [Twitter]

  • A former Georgetown neighborhood commissioner was cleared of making threats but not of bigotry. [WCP]

  • Evans has reached a Trumpian level of shamelessness, writes Colby King. [Post]

  • D.C.’s Car Wars. [Post]

  • More winter and more political gridlock, according to the taxidermied rodent in Dupont. [NBC, WTOP]

  • Former Coast Guard lieutenant Christopher Hasson was sentenced to 13 years for plans to target progressive politicians and news broadcasters. [BBC, Post]

YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips? lhayes@washingtoncitypaper.com

Y&H is out of the office.

ARTS LINKS, byKayla Randall (tips? krandall@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • What does your favorite area museum say about you? [WCP]

  • Prologue Theatre’s Recent Tragic Events is a dark comedy featuring quirky neighbors and a Joyce Carol Oates sock puppet. [WCP]

  • D.C. band Knovo gets a new name and debuts new material. [DCist]

SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips? ksoong@washingtoncitypaper.com)

  • Rui Hachimura and Moe Wagner will represent the Wizards on Team World in the NBA’s Rising Stars Challenge during All-Star weekend. [WJLA]

  • The Kansas City Chiefs rallied to beat the San Francisco 49ers, 31-20, in Super Bowl LIV and once again former Washington football team offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has to see a team he’s coaching lose a double-digit lead in the Super Bowl. [USA Today, Post]

  • Former Terps and Washington NFL tight end Vernon Davis announced he’s retiring—on a Super Bowl pregame show with Rob Gronkowski. [ProFootballTalk]

  • Down 17 points with 16 minutes remaining in the game, the Georgetown men’s basketball team rallied to beat St. John’s, 73-72. [AP]

MAKE PLANS, byEmma Sarappo (Love this section? Get the full To Do This Week newsletter here. Tips? esarappo@washingtoncitypaper.com)

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